Directed by Jeffrey Nachmanoff
A Special Ops officer gets mixed up in risky espionage.
Traitor is the “cinematic equivalent of an airport novel that can be purchased before a long flight, read en route, and discarded upon landing,” said Kirk Honeycutt in The Hollywood Reporter. As such, it easily qualifies as a “page-turner.” Don Cheadle plays a U.S. Special Ops officer whose shady involvement with Islamic extremists has made him an FBI target, and the film has enough twists to become a “genuinely gripping tale about international terrorism.” But its “characters are built for speed, not complications,” and director Jeffrey Nachmanoff leaves audiences with little insight into either them or their milieu. Traitor “never quite answers” most of the questions its plot poses, said Roger Ebert in the Chicago Sun-Times. It moves fast, keeps up the suspense, and “seems to know its subject matter,” but the film would be just another generic thriller if not for Cheadle. The actor has a “gift for effortlessly conveying a deep, complicated inner life,” said Nathan Rabin in The Onion. His captivating performance “illustrates how great acting can elevate standard-issue material” into something more substantial.